Calling all Prisoners

That may sound like a strange title, but I was very moved by reading Ephesians 4-6 this morning. In Ephesians, as in many of the books he wrote, Paul described himself as a prisoner. It made me ask myself, “Tina, How do you describe yourself ? What would God call you besides Tina?” Some of the names Paul gives himself are: an Apostle of Jesus Christ, a Prisoner of Christ Jesus for the Gentiles, a prisoner for the Lord and an Ambassador in chains. It hit me that he wanted to make sure readers knew that what he was writing was from the Lord, for whom He is a servant, prisoner and ambassador.

Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, to the saints who are at Ephesus, and who are faithful in Christ Jesus. Ephesians 1:1 NKJV

For this reason I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for you Gentiles— Ephesians 3:1 NKJV

I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called,  Ephesians 4 :1 NKJV

for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak. Ephesians 6:20 NKJV

This devotion may not be short, because I don’t want myself or you to rush past this important thought. We are titled by what we DO. Paul actively witnessed, testified, taught, encouraged, explained, exhorted and guided others, all for the cause of Christ Jesus. Thus, we know Him as a lover of Jesus Christ, anxious to draw others to Christ and help followers of Jesus be all that they can be in Him.

You know how when you first meet someone, you might ask what they do for a living? And how it tells us something about that person’s intellect, passion or daily life? We do not have to ask Paul what He does, because he tells us his names. He is acting out his title. His title comes from his relationship to Jesus and what He does for Jesus. His names are actions!

As Paul titled himself by what he was most passionate about and what he did for Jesus, what would we title ourselves? What action or passion that takes up most of our free time? what are we a prisoner to? And what do we want our title to be? Besides what we do for work, what do we do because we love Jesus so much? I am asking myself these questions as I type this morning. I believe that our title or name, to Jesus, is what He calls us to do for Him. Whether we work part-time or a 40 hour a week job, and whether we are retired following a passion or working in the church, Jesus is ultimately our “boss.” Our title is servant and representative of Jesus Christ. Wow, what an honor! He has called us all to represent Him in our work! We are what we do for Jesus. We are what He helps us to do for Him.

And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men,  knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ. Colossians 3:23-24

Dear Jesus,

Thank You for words today, as I am overwhelmed with the importance of what we are known by. We want to be known as Yours and want to do everything to please you, our Master and King. When we are work, help us to be good representatives of You in our speech, behavior and love for others. Give us opportunities to serve You there. When we are unsure of what path to take for You, please give us a calling and opportunity to be a worker in the church or to others. Thank You for shining Your light on this scripture today. Thank You for always being there to guide us in Your will. That’s what we want most. We love You so much! Amen

Love and prayers to all,

Just me.

Just His.

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